Wednesday, 13 October 2005
Government aid helps secure future for colliery
A SOUTH Wales mine will continue to operate until the end of
its natural life thanks to a further coal investment aid (CIA)
award of £842,000.
Energy Minister Malcolm Wicks announced the award to Tower
Colliery in Aberdare, South Wales, and paid tribute to the
determination and commitment shown by its workforce.
The award follows the submission of a revised application under
CIA Period 2 and brings the total amount awarded to the colliery
since 2004 to £3.06 million.
Mr Wicks said: “I am very pleased to make this award to Tower
Colliery. CIA support for the planned investment, to March 31
2006, will help ensure that the mine is worked to the end of its
“I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to the
determination and commitment shown by the Tower workforce in
maintaining access to their mine’s remaining reserves. They have
survived setbacks that would have beaten most other mines.
“I hope they now succeed not only in winning the last of the
coal from Tower but also in securing new mining jobs when the pit
has to close. My officials will continue to maintain contact with
Tower and with Welsh Assembly Government colleagues to give what
assistance they can in the coming years.”
He added: “With regard to the future of the CIA scheme, we said
we would fund up to £60 million over five years (ie by 2008); we
have now allocated more than £59 million and expect to pay it out
within three years of the original launch of Coal Investment Aid
Tower Colliery is a co-operatively owned anthracite mine that
employs 375 staff and produces around 500,000 tonnes per year. It
is located in Hirwaun, near Aberdare. In addition to some
housecoal sales, Tower sells a significant proportion of its
output to Innogy’s Aberthaw power station, which is essential to
security of energy supplies in South Wales.
Tower was awarded £2,215,166 of CIA in Period 1 (P1). This
covered forecast eligible investment costs to March 31 this year.
This further award brings the total awarded to the mine to
£3,057.304. The further award is expected to be drawn down by the
end of May next year.